29th December 2018 - A YEAR TO REMEMBER

In the Under 25’s double triples there was disappointment for South Shields, despite a spirited performance they succumbed to a 36-21 loss against Scarborough, the Shields squad was  William Gray, Kia Gray, Josh Halcrow, Jamies Brass, Josh Minto and Jaxon McKenna, Scarborough play Spalding in the last eight.

There was better news in the County Under 25’s double fours as Durham eased past Notts 46-12 at York. Jordan Harston (Aycliffe), Keith Burton (Darlington), Mark Barkess (Durham) and Bryan Henderson (Durham) beat K.Towle 20-7 and Conrad Morrison (Ferryhill), Josh Minto (Shields), Matty Ray (Hartlepool) and Josh Halcrow (Shields) defeated A.Fuller 26-5. Durham face either Yorkshire or Lincolnshire in the semi finals.

After the Christmas break the various team competitions resume, after their tremendous win over Darlington to reach the last sixteen of the Yetton Trophy Houghton ladies face another tough tie against York. In the Denny Cup South Shields head to Leeds to face the 2017 champions Kingsthorpe also in the last sixteen, the loss of Shaun McIntosh and Ian Riches may not be ideal however the talent and confidence running throughout the squad should carry them through into the last eight.
D.Paterson, J.Minto, J.Sneller, G.Farquhar, N.Ridley, M.Byrne, S.Hubbard, I.McIntosh, P.Dixon, M.Peach, K.Storf, D.Bolt, J.McKenna, P.Sainthouse, J.Halcrow, C.Yeomans.

The following day Shield’s will face Blackpool Newton Hall in the last sixteen of the Top club.

The inter county league continues next weekend as the bottom four sides go head to head, Houghton face Great Aycliffe and South Shields face Darlington.
The Houghton team is as follows; note the away leg starts at 1pm.
At Houghton – M.Baker, S.Patterson, A.Patterson, F.Froud, M.Noble, J.McAdoo, F.Fletcher, B.Henderson
At Aycliffe – M.Wright, K.Armstrong, J.Jones, P.Thomson, A.Grimes, E.Downes, D.Wright, R.Mckie

Latest Standings – Hartlepool 2-19, Durham 2-19, Gateshead B 2-14, Great Aycliffe 3-11, South Shields 3-9, Houghton 2-7, Darlington 2-1

In the Liberty Trophy following the nail biting one shot win over Cumbria the county selectors have named an unchanged team for the quarter final tie against Lincolnshire,  the tie will take place at New Earswick on January 12 at 2pm.


It has been another eventful twelve months around the local bowls scene, 2018 saw the emergence of the South Shield’s indoor club on the national stage, it may be classed in many quarters as a consolation competition but the Denny Plate is still a national competition which ultimately results in a national title, the Shield’s lad’s took the competition by storm and were never challenged eventually taking the national title with a win over West Berks at Nottingham, that experience has seen them progress into the last sixteen of the actual Denny Cup next weekend. Ian McIntosh broke onto the World Bowls Tour stage by securing a qualifying place at Carlisle into the 2018 world singles championships event at Potters - a feat that McIntosh has repeated again and will feature at Potters in January as he faces last year’s runner up Robert Paxton, there will be more Shield’s faces at Potters as brother Shaun and Jaxon McKenna will make their debuts after qualifying in the pairs event. Nina Riches landed another England ladies indoor trial but sadly missed out on a place in the squad.

Former Sunderland member and now playing out of Stanley Stevie Angus continues to shine in the English bowling disability circuit. There was a national title in the mixed pairs for the Hartlepool based husband and wife team of Paul and Lauren Mosley. The Hartlepool club landed a second national title as Glenn Skipp, Dale Oram and Ian Jackson secured the Over 55’s triples.

David Bolt landed the Open Singles Circuit events at Worksop and at his home club South Shields to seal a place at the grand finals weekend which sadly he missed out on although he is well on the way to qualify for the 2019 grand finals after landing the Durham Open Singles event. It has been a glorious year for Bolt, adding to those Open Singles successes he retained his place in an England team that secured a fourth consecutive home international series title at Paisley. The best however was yet to come and after landing a place in the five man England Commonwealth Games bowls squad at the Gold Coast Bolt was rewarded with a bronze medal in the fours.

The outdoor scene was dominated by Silksworth, they completed a league treble as they retained the Earl Cup and ended Houghton Dairy Lane’s hopes of a 5th consecutive Swan Cup title, there third league success saw them land the Grindon League which was topped off by adding the Tommy Thompson double fours title. A 3-2-1 knock out triples title was added to a Silver Jack’s pair’s success for Jimmy Richardson and Gary McPheators, the Burkett Shield was also secured by Neal Ridley, Ian Riches and Billy Ferry. At County level they landed three titles, David Bolt landed the four bowl singles and then became the first county player to have held all six titles during their career with a first two bowl success and then alongside Neal Ridley, Phil Dixon and Ian Riches another fours title. It could have been even better as Jaxon McKenna missed out in the Junior Singles final as did Dixon, Farquhar and Bolt in the triples final. At the Northern Counties Bolt landed both singles and the fours where Scot Baker subbed for Phil Dixon. At the National Championships held at Leamington Spa the Silksworth county champions missed out in the singles, triples and fours all at the semi final stages however Bolt has retained his outdoor skips role place in the England team for the 2019 home international series in June at Ayr.

Barnes Park B lifted the Harold Howey league and Hetton Workmen’s the Storey Bowl, the Sunderland & District  champion of champion’s trophies had new names as Seaham Town’s Brian Henderson took the main title and Roker Marine’s John Smith the seniors.

In the ladies senior pairs national championships held at Leamington Spa there was a heart warming outcome as the Houghton Dairy Lane duo of Glynis Morgan and Joan Rodgerson landed the national title with a 21-12 win over the defending champions Hampshire’s Margaret Holden, it has been a tough 2018 the Dairy Lane duo and this success was well deserved.

Sadly 2018 saw the loss of several bowlers, some not seen on the green for a few years but still fondly remembered - Albert Rodgerson (Houghton Dairy Lane), Ethel Pattison (Barnes Park), Bobby Brewis (Barnes West End), Alex Robinson (Thompson Park), Ernie Naylor (Whitburn), Peter Bulmer (Barley Mow), Jimmy Blair (Hetton Workmens), sadly another name has been added as the former Barley Mow and Ryhope member Gordon Reay (86) passed away, god bless them all


It was a mixed weekend for the two Durham County teams, in the Liberty Trophy the men came out on top in a thriller against Cumbria and despite a spirited performance the ladies were beaten 113-105 by Nottinghamshire in the Atherley Trophy. The last time the men faced Cumbria at Carlisle they were thumped by 52 shots however they held there nerve this time around and got home 111-110. Across the green Durham had three winnings rinks, the South Shields quartet of Phil Dixon, Mal Peach, Gary Farquhar and David Bolt defeated Stuart Airey 24-13, Hartlepool’s Paul Mosley beat Stephen Farish 24-18 and club mate Vinnie O’Neill got home 25-24 against David Forster. Another Hartlepool skip Paul Hartley was last rink on and secured the winning shot in a 15-15 draw with Martin Rice, the two losing rinks saw Gary Smith lose 20-11 to Stuart Irwin and Phil Smithson 20-12 to Ian Gallagher. In the quarter finals Durham will face Lincolnshire at New Earswick, the two teams met at the same stage last season with Lincolnshire winning by 23 shots, the Durham selectors have named an unchanged team for the January clash.  

Houghton finally ended their Top Ten winless streak with a 9-1 win over Ferryhill, Peter Thomson secured the points in the singles with an impressive 21-11 win over Alan Hinds while in the pairs Joe Sutherland and Stevie Tindale snatched a last end treble to grab a 13-13 draw against Kevin Weallans. In the triples Michael Wright, Eric Downes and Peter Brickle had to work hard for a 12-9 win over Ken Peters and in the fours Tony Grimes, Karl Armstrong, David Wright and Alan J Dunn eased to a 20-8 win over K.Hutchinson.

South Shields will go into 2019 still running in two national team competitions following a comfortable 12-4 win over The Parks in the top club, in the last sixteen they will face Blackpool who whitewashed Darlington 16-0, the tie is due to take place on January 6. The day before Shields will head to Leeds to face Kingsthorpe in the last sixteen of the Denny Cup.
D.Paterson, J.Minto, J.Sneller, G.Farquhar, N.Ridley, M.Byrne, S.Hubbard, I.McIntosh, P.Dixon, M.Peach, K.Storf, D.Bolt, J.McKenna, P.Sainthouse, J.Halcrow, C.Yeomans.

The inter county league takes a break for Christmas until January 6 when the bottom four sides go head to head, Houghton face Great Aycliffe and South Shields face Darlington. The Houghton team is as follows; note the away leg starts at 1pm.
At Houghton – M.Baker, S.Patterson, A.Patterson, F.Froud, M.Noble, J.McAdoo, F.Fletcher, B.Henderson
At Aycliffe – M.Wright, K.Armstrong, J.Jones, P.Thomson, A.Grimes, E.Downes, D.Wright, R.Mckie

Latest Standings – Hartlepool 2-19, Durham 2-19, Gateshead B 2-14, Great Aycliffe 3-11, South Shields 3-9, Houghton 2-7, Darlington 2-1

There has been more action in the local national competitions, in the singles Shield’s David Bolt ended Durham’s Phil Smithson’s run 21-16 to book an area semi final place, Bolt will play either Hartlepool’s Vinnie O’Neill or Ferryhill’s Alan Hinds. In the pairs Josh Halcrow and James Sneller (Shields) enjoyed another win at Durham this time 18-11 against Mark Higgins, in the area semi final Sneller will face a local derby against either club mates Dave Paterson or Ian McIntosh. The Houghton trio of Michael Wright, Patrick Thomson and Peter Thomson had a terrific 18-11 home win over the Shields trio of Mal Peach, Gary Farquhar and David Bolt, in the area semi final Thomson will face either Neal Ridley (Shields) of Frankie Froud (Houghton). In the over 50’s triples Darlington’s Tony Macey progressed 19-10 at Hartlepool against Stan Robinson. South Shield’s Neal Ridley’s run in the two bowl singles came to an end with a 21-8 loss at Stanley to Brett Arkley, the Stanley player will face either David Bolt (Shields) of Alan Jobling (Gateshead) next. In the over 60’s double fours Stanley defeated Aycliffe 41-30 and will face Cumbria in the new year. An all Hartlepool clash in the mixed fours saw Marc Squirrell beat Paul Mosley 18-15 to set up an area semi final against Aycliffe’s Barry Attwood, the latter defeated Darlington’s Sam Pegg 16-7, Michael Bennett won an all West Denton quarter final 19-15 against Arron Robson and will host South Shields Ian Riches next.

The Durham County Under 25’s are in action tomorrow as they face Nottinghamshire at York in the first round of the double fours, the teams last met seven years ago with Notts winning by 10 shots, the Durham squad is as follows
T.Cairns (Darlington), K.Burton (Darlington), M.Ray (Hartlepool), J.Halcrow (Shields), J.Harston (Aycliffe), C.Morrison (Ferryhill), M.Barkess (Durham), B.Henderson (Durham)

In the latest round of Midland seniors league fixtures Durham cruised to a 43 shot win over Lincolnshire at York, across the green Durham won on five of the six rinks with Hartlepool’s Dale Oram’s quartet the pick of them defeating John Kine 27-11. The20-2 point’s return moves Durham into second place just a couple of points behind Yorkshire and with a game in hand.

There is more open singles circuit action taking place today at Barwell, having missed out on qualification for the grand finals weekend last season Durham’s Gary Smith goes in search of more ranking points, in the first round Smith will face Herga’s Paul Reynolds who reached the last eight at the grand finals weekend.

Following the Sunderland & District AGM there will be a couple of changes next season, with the latter part of the season affected by bad light all league games after August 8 will be limited to 15 ends and any team that defaults more than two games 7-0 will be withdrawn from the said league.


In the latest round of this seasons Denny Cup South Shield’s secured a last sixteen spot with an impressive 46 shot win over Hornsea winning on all four rinks. At Shields Dave Paterson, Josh Minto, Stewart Hubbard and Ian Riches eased to a 24-10 over Carl Stoakes while Neal Ridley, Michael Byrne, James Sneller and Ian McIntosh ground out a 20-17 win over Dave Tooley to leave the home squad 17 shots up. At Hornsea both Shields rinks put in five star performances, Jaxon McKenna, Paul Sainthouse, Josh Halcrow and Shaun McIntosh  defeated Ian Paddy 27-12 and Phil Dixon, Mal Peach, Gary Farquhar and David Bolt beat Cliff Holmes 27-13 to leave the away squad an impressive 29 shots up which sealed the overall result 98-52. In the last sixteen the 2017 champions Kingsthorpe will provide the opposition, the Northampton based club have four current England internationalists in their ranks while Shields will be without Ian Riches and Shaun McIntosh.
There was an amazing win for Houghton ladies in the latest round of the Yetton Trophy, despite losing on three of the four rinks against Darlington at a combined 31 shots they still won by 26 shots overall. Down the A1 Norma Stephenson’s quartet of Maureen Hall, Audrey Vout and Florence Phythian narrowly went down 19-13 to V.Henderson while Margaret Metcalf, Margaret Eggleston, Joan Baker and Ann Banks never recovered from an early 11-1 deficit and finished 36-13 down against Jane Pattison to leave the away leg 29 shots in arrears. At Houghton Jenny Smiths rink of Sam Richardson, Olwyn Charlton and Brenda Robson lost 18-16 against Sam Pegg to extend the arrears to 31 however the events on the remaining rink were astonishing. Jean Watt, Evelyn Barkes, Val Bambrough and Joan Rodgerson were awesome as they restricted V.Blewitt to a single shot while rattling off an amazing fifty eight shots which secured a 100-74 overall win. In the last sixteen Houghton will face York on January 5.

Houghton ladies ended off the year with another win over Darlington this time in the inter club league, unlike the Yetton Houghton recorded wins on three of the four rinks in a 9-1 win. At Darlington Norma Stephenson’s rink of Maureen Hall, Audrey Vout and Florence Phythian ran out 21-14 winners over V.Blewitt while Margaret Metcalf, Anne Todd, Joan Baker and Jenny Smith were a touch unlucky to lose 14-10 against S.Lynch, however the away squad still finished 3 shots up. At Houghton both home rinks past the thirty shot mark, Margaret Eggleston, Sheila Moody, Brenda Robson and Ellen Faith led 25-1 against Jane Pattison eventually finishing 34-12. Jean Watt, Evelyn Barkes, Susan Forster and Joan Rodgerson completed another impressive home performance with a 31-8 win over V.Henderson to leave the home squad 45 shots up and seal a 96-47 overall win.

South Shield’s hopes of a semi final place in this years Egham Trophy were dashed as they suffered a 76-59 loss at the hands of Blackpool Newton Hall.

Both the Durham County men’s and ladies teams are in action today, the men travel to Carlisle to face a tough Liberty Trophy opener against Cumbria, this is the fourth year running the counties have clashed with Durham winning three of them however the last time they met at Carlisle they were thumped by 52 shots. In the ladies Atherley Trophy Durham head to New Earswick to face Nottinghamshire, in recent years they have met four times with Durham losing them all and having not won a game in the Atherley for over eight years a victory is long overdue.

The latest round of fixtures in the Top Ten take place today, Houghton play will be looking for their first win of the season as they play hosts to Ferryhill.
Singles – P.Thomson
Pairs – J.Sutherland & F.Froud
Triples – M.Wright, E,Downes, P.Brickle
Fours – A.Grimes, K.Armstrong, D.Wright, AJ.Dunn

There has been plenty of action in the local section of this seasons national competitions, in the singles Houghton’s Patrick Thomson’s run was ended with a 21-14 loss at Gateshead against Brian Orrell, the Gateshead lad will host Durham’s Mark Higgins next. In the pairs there were a couple of Durham v Stanley clashes, Michael Laydon missed out on home advantage as Stanley’s Ian Peacock won 18-12 however Durham’s Mark Higgins won a cracker against Brett Arkley 18-17, Higgins will host South Shields James Sneller who had a terrific 15-14 at Durham against Gary Smith. There was more good news for Shields as Dave Paterson defeated Stanley’s James McKenna 22-10 and Ian McIntosh beat Durham’s Andrew Barkess 21-8 which sets up an all Shields clash next.
In the triples Neal Ridley (Shields) had a comfortable 23-4 win at Durham against Mark Barkess and will host Houghton’s Frankie Froud next, Gary Smith won an all Durham affair against Michael Laydon 22-6 and will entertain Shields Stewart Hubbard who in turn ended Houghton’s Sam Patterson’s run 23-9, in the south section two Hartlepool squads will meet after Paul Hartley’s 22-3 win over Darlington’s Tony Macey and Glenn Skipps 19-6 win over another Darlington triple James Humble. Gary Farquhar (Shields) made progress in the fours with a 23-4 win over Durham’s Michael Laydon, Farquhar heads to Houghton next to face Peter Thomson.

Hartlepool’s Paul Hartley’s run in the mixed pairs continues after an 18-9 win over Redcar’s Tom Entwhistle, South Shields Dave Paterson beat Durham’s Brian Brown 22-13 and will face West Denton’s Arron Robson next. In the mixed fours Ian Riches (Shields) eased past Durham’s Mark Higgins 24-5 and will head to West Denton next. There was better news for Higgins in the family pairs as he avenged last season’s loss to Ian McIntosh (Shields) with an impressive 20-9 win.

In the two bowl singles Neal Ridley (Shields) had a cracking 21-18 win at Gateshead against Alex Bryden and will head to Stanley next to face Brett Arkley, David Bolt (Shields) received a second walk over and will host Gateshead’s Alan Jobling next who won a thriller against The Parks Steve Miller 21-20. In the over 60’s fours Stanley’s John Thurlbeck eased past Houghton’s Michael Wright 21-1, there was also disappointment for the South Shields A team in the over 60’s double fours as they were narrowly beaten 31-27 by Cumbria.

In the area final of the champion of champions Darlington’s Mark Jones ended Durham’s Gary Smith’s hopes 21-11, Jones heads to the Warner’s Lakeside complex for the latter stages where he will face Exonia’s Jamie Chestney.

South Shields will look to progress in the Top club tomorrow as they head to The Parks.
Singles – P.Dixon & M.Charles
Mixed Pairs – J.Tallack & J.McKenna
Mixed Triples – M.Robson, J.Sneller, G.Farquhar
Mixed Fours – A.Upsall, P.Bryne, J.Minto, S.Hubbard

Entries are still being taken by Bowls England for their various national competitions, entries can be made and paid for via the Bowls England website online portal.

8th December 2018 - BOLT LANDS DURHAM PRIZE

Durham played hosts to the latest Open Singles Circuit event, South Shields David Bolt quickly erased his disappointment in the Grand Finals weekend at Potters by winning the Durham event with a straight set 9-2,10-0 victory over Lincolns Graham Smith. On route to the title Bolt defeated John Askwith 10-1,10-3, Kevin Rands (Lincoln) 8-2,4-6, 2-0, Pat Briscoe (Betteshanger) 7-2,5-1, Glenn Skipp (Hartlepool) 4-5,9-1,2-1, in the semi finals a classic Bolt final bowl draw ended the host clubs Mark Higgins hopes 7-6,2-7,2-1. One of the favourites for the event Durham’s Gary Smith went out in the last eight to Lincolns Alan Watts 2-7,6-4,2-0. The win moves Bolt up to 4th in the ranking while Smith sits at 6th, with the top 32 ranked players guaranteed a spot in the 2019 grand finals weekend both players points total already looks good enough to qualify.

There was even more good news for Bolt, following last weekend’s international trials at Rugby the Shields star has retained his place in the England team for the home international series in March at Falcon IBC, Bolt continues at third bowl to Exonia’s Jamie Chestney. Fellow club mate and England hopeful Nina Riches sadly missed out on breaking into the England ladies team.  

Houghton Sancroft’s hopes of reaching the end of season play off’s in the over 60’s inter club are still alive after a thrilling last gasp 38-35 home win over South Shields A. Peter Thomson, Trevor Joicey, Dave Sim and Frankie Froud collected a match winning four on their last end to beat Ebby Dent, Derek Wilson, Ronnie Chapman and Bobby Graham 14-8. Ian Whorlton’s quartet of Joe Sutherland, Jimmy Swinney and Freddie Fletcher also collected a vital last end double to beat Alan Lawton 12-8, those scores cancelled out Alfie Ferguson, Barney Walsh, Dave Sim and John Jones 19-12 loss at the hands of Billy Ferry. Points wise it was 4-1 in Sancroft’s favour which closes the gap to second placed Shield’s to just a couple of points, Sancroft travel to leaders Stanley on January 7 in another must win game while Shield’s have a bye.
Latest Group standings – Stanley 3-13, South Shields A 4-11, Houghton Sancroft 4-9, Gateshead A 2-2

The latest round in the ladies Mason Trophy double fours saw Houghton and South Shields go head to head with the latter running out 41-24 winners. At Houghton Jenny Smith, Evelyn Barkes, Brenda Robson and Joan Rodgerson narrowly went down 16-15 to A.Jamieson, Jean Chapman, P.Bryne and Marilyn Robson however on the quicker Shield’s carpet the Houghton quartet of Doreen Fenwick, Liz Morris, Joan Baker and Norma Stephenson were swept away 25-9 by Irene Kirtly, M.Paton, Ann Upsall and Pam Carlin, in the next round Shields will face either Redcar or West Denton in the new year.

There has been some cracking games in the local stages of the national competitions, the result of the week came in the singles as an impressive Phil Smithson defeated Durham club mate Gary Smith 21-9, Smithson’s reward is a trip to Shields to face David Bolt. There was a Durham double as Mark Higgins cruised to a 21-4 win over Houghton’s Dan Todner and Michael Laydon had a smashing 21-18 win at Stanley against Brett Arkley, in the next round Laydon heads to Shields to face Gary Farquhar who defeated club mate Shaun McIntosh 21-19.

In the pairs Paul Mosley’s 18-9 win over Aycliffe’s Jordan Harston sets up an all Hartlepool clash against Paul Hartley, Durham’s Michael Laydon eased past Houghton’s Sam Patterson 23-4 and will host Stanley’s Ian Peacock next. There will be another Durham/Stanley clash as Mark Higgins 20-12 win over Paul Sainthouse (Shields) sets up a tie against Brett Arkley who had a hard fought 17-14 win at Shields against Josh Minto, Dave Paterson (Shields) beat Gateshead’s Alex Bryden 22-18 while Ian McIntosh won a thrilling all Shield’s affair against Ian Riches 17-16.

There were a couple of cracking away wins for Houghton triples, Frankie Froud recorded a 19-16 win at West Denton against Graeme Robinson and Patrick Thomson narrowly got home 14-13 at Durham against Mark Higgins.

In the fours Ian Riches (Shields) had a good 17-9 win at Gateshead over Brian Orrell and will head to Durham next to face Gary Smith who received a walk over, Houghton’s Peter Thomson got home on the last end in a low scoring 14-13 win also at Gateshead against Alan Jobling, in the south section Hartlepool’s Paul Hartley beat Darlington’s Tony Macey 26-6 and will host Aycliffe’s Barry Attwood who ended Hartlepool’s Glenn Skipp’s hopes 15-14.

In the Under 25’s Josh Minto (Shields) booked an area final place after defeating West Denton’s Arron Robson 2-0, Minto will face either Hartlepool’s Matty Ray or Darlington’s Keith Burton. Gateshead’s Brian Poulter’s run in the over 60’s singles continues, a 21-12 win over Stevie Krimpen (Durham) sets up a tie against Stanley’s Brian Houghton who in turn ended South Shield’s Peter Brickle’s hopes 21-11, Stanley’s John Thurlbeck had an impressive 21-9 win over Gateshead’s Ronnie Richardson.
There was more disappointment for Brickle in the over 60’s pairs at Durham as Malcolm Robinson inflicted a 22-14 defeat on the Shields player. In the over 50’s triples Dave Paterson (Shields) beat Brian Harris (Stanley) 17-13 and will host Houghton’s Stevie Tindale next, West Denton’s Peter Dawson defeated Durham’s Michael Laydon 23-16 and will face Stanley’s Brett Arkley who in turn defeated Gateshead’s Brian Poulter 17-10. The only tie in the over 60’s fours saw Billy Ferry (Shields) narrowly miss out 16-15 at Gateshead against Brian Orrell.

The Denny Cup resumes with South Shields looking to repeat their Egham success against Hornsea as the two teams meet again today, Shields have kept faith with the squad that battled back to beat Houghton in the last round.
At Shields – D.Paterson, J.Minto, S.Hubbard, I.Riches, N.Ridley, K.Storf, J.Sneller, I.McIntosh
At Hornsea – P.Dixon, M.Peach, G.Farquhar, D.Bolt, J.McKenna, P.Sainthouse, J.Halcrow, S.McIntosh
The other local tie should be a classic as Hartlepool will look to end defending champions Cumbria’s hopes.

The Denny Plate also takes place today, locally Durham have a tough tie against Blackpool NH and Great Aycliffe face Selby.

Houghton ladies are in Yetton Trophy action today as they attempt to book a place in the last sixteen with a win over Darlington, the only change from the squad that defeated Cumbria in the previous round will see Olwyn Charlton replace the unavailable Ruth Turnbull. The winners will play either York or Scunthorpe in the next round.
At Houghton – J.Watt, E.Barkes, V.Bambrough, J.Rodgerson, S.Richardson, O.Charlton, B.Robson, J.Smith
At Darlington – M.Metcalf, M.Eggleston, J.Baker, A.Banks, M.Hall, E.Morris, A.Vout, N.Stephenson

In the Yetton Plate South Shields will also look to book a last sixteen place as the face Eden, the winners will play either Harrogate or North Cave.

After their 7-3 win over Gateshead the Houghton ladies will look to build on that win as they return to inter club league action on Wednesday (1230 start) as they tackle Darlington.
At Houghton – M.Eggleston, S.Moody, B.Robson, E.Faith, J.Watt, E.Barkes, S.Forster, J.Rodgerson
At Darlington – M.Hall, A.Vout, F.Phythian, N.Stephenson, M.Metcalf, A.Todd, J.Baker, JB.Smith

Durham County ladies start there Atherley Trophy campaign against Nottinghamshire at New Earswick next weekend, locally Houghton’s Maureen Hall, Joan Baker and Norma Stephenson plus the South Shields contingent of Jackie Tallack, Irene Kirkley, Ann Jamieson, Pam Carlin, Jean Chapman, M.Paton and Maureen Charles have all been selected to play.

The North Biddick club had an eventful 2018 outdoor season, at the start of the season they had to cope with having to play their opening home league games away due to issues with the green however this didn’t deter them and they went on to win the Earl Cup division two title, they recently held there presentation evening at the North Biddick social club where Deputy Mayor Cllr David Snowdon (pictured) presented the trophies. The evening was a personal triumph for Bill Piggott who despite suffering all season with a foot injury won seven trophies including the pairs with Dave Cowley, Piggott also landed club player of the year while Ray Patterson in his first season playing bowls won the Rose Bowl, Ellen Faith dominated the ladies section winning two trophies, the final trophy for the club championship was won by Bill Robson.

1st December 2018 - SHIELD'S EGHAM PROGRESS

In the latest round of the Egham Trophy South Shield’s had to rely on a terrific performance from both away rinks as they defeated Hornsea 88-60. At home Marilyn Robson, Karen Paterson, James Sneller and Gary Farquhar fought back from 11-1 down to only finish 21-19 down against Carl Stoakes while Ann Upsall, Pam Carlin, Phil Dixon and Ian Riches went down 24-17 to England skip Danielle Martinson which left the visitors 9 shots up, however it was a different story at Hornsea. Nina Riches, Jean Chapman, Dave Paterson and David Bolt romped to a 28-8 win over Cliff Holmes while Jackie Tallack, Maureen Charles, Jaxon McKenna and Shaun McIntosh were impressive 24-7 winners over David Tooley which left the away squad a massive 37 shots up and sealed the overall win. In the last sixteen Shield’s will face Blackpool after the latter ended Durham’s hopes 69-64.

Houghton ladies moved into the next round of the Mason Trophy double fours with a hard fought 36-31 win over Great Aycliffe. The away quartet of Doreen Fenwick, Liz Morris, Joan Baker and Norma Stephenson went down 21-15 to E.Hugill however the home rink of Jenny Smith, Evelyn Barkes, Brenda Robson and Joan Rodgerson collected a last end four to get home 21-10. In the next round Houghton will face South Shield’s who defeated Ferryhill 41-21.

In the next round of the men’s over 60’s double fours both Houghton squads were beaten. The A team faced South Shields A and succumbed 35-27, at Houghton Joe Sutherland, Mal Baker, Freddie Fetcher and Michael Davis collected an early seven against Ernie McCord, Bob Cragg, Alan Lawton and Billy Ferry but had to settle for a narrow 17-15 win, at Shield’s George Brown, Peter Thomson, John Jones and Frankie Froud saw things slip away in the second half of the game going from 9-9 to finish 20-10 down to Ebby Dent, Fred Knubley, Ron Chapman and Bobby Graham, in the next round Shield’s will face Cumbria. The Houghton B squad also tasted defeat this time 40-22 at the hands of Darlington B. The home quartet of Tony Grimes, David Forth, D.Robson and Billy Roberts were left to rue a slow start trailing 7-0 and in the end had to settle for a 13-12 loss to Alan Henderson, down at Darlington Stan Barnes, Dave Armstrong, Richard Thorpe and Frankie Kell led 7-1 against Stan Summers but that was as good as it got and they eventually succumbed to a 25-10 loss, in the next round Darlington will face Thornaby. South Shield’s B narrowly lost 32-31 against Great Aycliffe who will face Stanley next.

The local stages of this seasons national competitions continue at a pace, in the singles an all Shield’s clash saw David Bolt defeat Ian McIntosh 21-19, Durham’s Gary Smith defeated Shield’s Alan Lawton 21-12 and will now face his pairs partner Phil Smithson who had a cracking 21-8 win at West Denton against Michael Bennett, Gary Farquhar (Shields) eased past Gateshead’s Mark Smith 21-9 and will next face club mate Shaun McIntosh. Houghton’s Patrick Thomson enjoyed a 21-13 win at Durham against Mark Barkess and heads to Gateshead next to face Brian Orrell. In the south section Hartlepool’s Paul Hartley’s run came to an end with a 21-19 loss at Ferryhill against Alan Hinds, the Ferryhill player will head to Hartlepool to face either Vinnie O’Neill or Glen Skipp.

There was better news for Hartley in the pairs with two quick fire wins over Darlington opposition, an away 18-8 win over Keith Burton and then a home 23-9 win over Tony Macey, West Denton’s Arron Robson defeated Stanley’s Eddie Henry 20-9 and will face The Park’s Matthew Raftree next who in turn defeated Houghton’s Peter Thomson 24-5. South Shield’s James Sneller cruised to a 31-13 win over Durham’s Mark Barkess and will now head to Durham to face Gary Smith. In the triples Smith defeated Stanley’s Brett Arkley 18-9 and will next face club mate Michael Laydon who ended Houghton’s Stevie Tindales hopes 18-7, there was better news for Houghton’s Sam Patterson who had a cracking 18-14 win at Gateshead over Malcolm Johnston. In the fours Durham’s Gary Smith completed a double over Stanley’s Brett Arkley this time 17-5 and South Shield’s Ian Riches defeated West Denton’s Clive Knott 17-14.

In the over 60’s singles Billy Ferry (Shields) defeated West Denton’s Roy Goldsmith 21-11 and Houghton’s Michael Wright defeated South Shields Joe Webster 21-8. Wright also progressed in the pairs with a 18-16 win over Gateshead’s Brian Poulter and will now head to Shields to face Billy Ferry who narrowly beat Stanley’s Eddie Henry 14-12. In the over 50 triples there was a Houghton double over Gateshead as Stevie Tindale beat Brian Orrell 12-11 and Michael Wright defeated Malcolm Johnston 20-7 however another Houghton squad went out as Dave Armstrong went down 17-13 at Durham to Mark Barkess.

In the champion of champions Durham’s Gary Smith won a thriller against Shield’s Phil Dixon 21-20 and will now face Darlington’s Mark Jones in the area final after the latter defeated Ferryhill’s Alan Hinds 21-18.

It has been a good week in the mixed pairs for South Shields as three squads booked quarter final places, David Bolt’s 23-9 win over Durham’s Mark Higgins sets up a clash against club mate Ian Riches who ended Paul Sainthouse’s hopes 25-16, the third success saw Dave Paterson run out a 22-13 winner over Durham’s Brian Brown. In the mixed fours South Shields Shaun McIntosh went out losing 21-18 at home to West Denton’s Aaron Robson.

The Durham County seniors had a resounding 126-89 win over Lincolnshire in the first round of the over 60’s Liberty Trophy, in the next round Durham face Yorkshire. The seniors also made a winning start in the Midland Seniors league defeating Leicestershire 194-70 (21-1) at Selby.

Durham have named there Liberty Cup team to face Cumbria on December 15, three clubs dominate the 24 man squad – Hartlepool (10), Durham (7) and South Shields (6), there are three debutee’s in one rink – Aycliffe youngster Jordan Harston and South Shield’s James Sneller both get well deserved call ups and (Shields) and following last season’s over 50’s national title Hartlepool’s Dale Oram gets the nod to form Durham’s Phil Smithson’s front three, there are also overdue debuts for Durham’s Bryan Henderson and Michael Laydon.
The Potters resort was once again the venue for the Open Singles Circuit grand finals weekend, last season’s top thirty two ranked players battled it out for the £1,600 first prize, locally South Shield’s David Bolt and Durham’s Michael Laydon were part of the field. In the group stages the top two qualified into the knock out last sixteen stages, sadly Bolt finished third in his group with a final group tie breaker loss to Torquay’s Danny Denison ending his hopes. Laydon however reached the knock out stages finishing second in his group with a straight sets win over last season’s top ranked player Oxford’s Scott Edwards, in a last sixteen tie that could have gone either way Laydon’s dreams were dashed as the Durham player went down 4-3,5-4 to Huntingdon’s  Nicky Brett. The eventual winner was Moonfleet’s Martin Pluckett last season’s number three seed. 

There was some sad news for the local bowls scene this week as Jimmy Blair (72) sadly passed away, the Hetton Workmen’s member was a very popular character within the game and a much respected player.  


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